REDF

REDF
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REDF creates job opportunities for thousands of Californians with multiple barriers to employment – including dislocated youth, individuals who have been homeless or incarcerated, and those with severe mental illness – in sustainable nonprofit social enterprises in low-income communities throughout the state. Employees receive training and support, earn wages, pay taxes, and often reduce their reliance on costly public programs. The nonprofit operator earns income selling goods and services like landscaping, apparel screen printing, electronic waste recycling, and fresh-cut, local organic produce. This project is being evaluated to determine the potential of these enterprises as scalable employment vehicles.

Grantee Information
Federal Awards: 
$3 million over two years (2010-2011) $3 million over two years (2012-2013)
Focus Area: 
Economic Opportunity
Geographic Focus: 
California (San Francisco Bay Area; Los Angeles)
Collaborating Partners: 
Association for Corporate Growth; Bank of America; California Workforce Association; Center for Employment Opportunities; NISH/AbilityOne Pacific West Regional Office; San Francisco Office of Economic and Workforce Development; United Way of Greater Los Angeles; Bay Area Workforce Funding Collaborative
Collaborating Funders: 
The California Endowment; Fresno Regional Foundation; Mitchell Kapor Foundation; George R. Roberts; Walter and Elise Haas Fund

REDF is the only intermediary in the country that provides grants and technical assistance exclusively to nonprofit social enterprises that employ low-income people with multiple barriers to employment, including, dislocated youth, individuals who have been homeless or incarcerated, and those with severe mental illness. Through the SIF grants, REDF will:

Employ at least 2,500 low-income young people and adults with multiple barriers to employment in nonprofit social enterprises (a figure that will expand to 8,000 by 2020 as enterprises achieve sustainability); Expand their work to include multiple low-income communities in California, such as Fresno, Los Angeles, Sacramento, and San Diego; Conduct a rigorous Social Return on Investment (SROI) analysis and impact analysis to quantify the effect of social enterprises on employee income, receipt of public and employer benefits, education, taxes and incarceration; and Produce a growth plan and guide for replication that will inform both the expansion of REDF and the social enterprise model, with the goal of employing tens of thousands of people in the identified target population throughout the U.S.

Track Record before Social Innovation Fund Grant:

  • Assisted more than 40 nonprofit social enterprises that have employed and increased economic opportunity for more than 5,500 individuals. Types of enterprises include: landscaping, electronic waste and other recycling, outsourced property management, apparel screen printing, stadium concessions, and janitorial services.
  • Evidence found that among those employed in REDF-assisted enterprises who were interviewed 18 to 24 months after hire, 77% had worked in the previous six months and between time of hire and follow-up, and the average wage increased by 31%.

Progress:

  • REDF selected six subgrantees in early 2011 working in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, Richmond, San Rafael, and Santa Monica, CA in their first competition; and
  • In their second competition, REDF selected three additional subgrantees working in Encinitas, Santa Ana, and Los Angeles, CA in late 2011.

Nonprofits Receiving Social Innovation Fund Awards from REDF

BuckelewCommunity Resource Center
Center for Employment OpportunitiesGoodwill Industries of Silicon Valley
ChrysalisTaller San Jose
Coalition for Responsible Community DevelopmentUrban Strategies
Community Housing PartnershipWeingart Center Association

Buckelew
San Rafael, California
Amount of Initial Award: $550,000 over two years

Buckelew will start a new social enterprise. In 2010, Buckelew worked with REDF over a 10 month period to complete a 3-staged feasibility study, and it is well on the way to completing the full business plan for this new initiative and hiring an enterprise manager to run the business. REDF support for this initiative over the next several years will enable Buckelew to launch the business, bring it to scale, and measure the outcomes associated with the initiative. Clients who have been disconnected from the workforce will learn valuable skills. The number of people served is to be determined. Buckelew will contribute to REDF's goal of moving 2,500 people into the workforce by 2015, with 70% retaining jobs for at least 1 year.


Center for Employment Opportunities
New York, New York
Amount of Initial Award: $502,131 over two years

REDF will help the Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO) support, sustain and build growth capacity for Golden State Works (GSW) Oakland, an implementation of CEO’s model by a third party non-profit provider in Oakland, California. REDF will also provide business assistance to expand CEO's model in other parts of California and provide resources for the employee supports provided to the adults it serves. The total number of people served is to be determined. For over two years, CEO has worked closely with REDF to bring its program to Oakland, a high-impact community where more than 2,000 people transition from prison to parole each year. Critical support for GSW has been secured, with CalTrans committed as a transitional jobs customer for three years and CDCR committed to providing funds for vocational services. GSW will represent CEO's first attempt to have an affiliate partner implement the model. The affiliate is anticipated to be selected via a competitive process with operations beginning in Winter 2011. The selected provider will deliver all components of the core CEO model. CEO will provide on-the-ground technical assistance to ensure the model is implemented with fidelity, and will be directly responsible for key systems such as participant scheduling, daily payroll, and customized data collection. REDF will provide the third party with business assistance and lend the project local expertise. CEO and REDF will explore adding new transitional work partners, including those in the private sector, based on private sector business models and REDF’s private sector contacts in order to bring CEO's model to other parts of the State. The number of people served is to be determined. REDF's work with CEO will contribute to REDF's goal of moving 2,500 people into the workforce by 2015, with 70% retaining employment for at least one year.


Chrysalis
Santa Monica, California
Amount of Initial Award: $595,000 over two years

Chrysalis will develop a new business to add to its existing portfolio of social enterprises and expand the number of job opportunities available via its existing social enterprises. The number of clients that could benefit from a transitional job experience with Chrysalis significantly outstrips the current supply of jobs provided and certain programmatic objectives cannot be effectively met within the framework of its two current businesses. An estimate of the number of individuals and families to be served is to be determined. As a result of its work, Chrysalis will contribute to the overall goal of 2,500 people moving into the workforce by 2015, with 70% retaining employment for at least one year.


Coalition for Responsible Community Development
Los Angeles, California
Amount of Initial Award: $300,000 over two years

REDF will assist the Coalition for Responsible Community Development (CRCD) to refine and grow their social enterprise, CRCD Enterprises, that employs at-risk young adults in South Los Angeles on work such as graffiti removal, painting, and maintenance. CRCD will leverage their existing workforce development programs, as well as innovative partnerships with YouthBuild and LA Trade Tech College, to create more job opportunities and improved pathways to careers. An estimate of the number of individuals to be served is to be determined. CRCD will contribute to REDF’s overall goal of 2,500 people moving into the workforce by 2015, with 70% retaining employment for at least one year; and developing a sustainable model that can be widely replicated.


Community Housing Partnership San Francisco, California
Amount of Initial Award: $500,000 over two years

REDF will help to expand CHP Enterprises, a social enterprise operated by Community Housing Partnership and rooted in the organization’s core competencies in the recession-resistant industry of affordable housing management. CHP Enterprises was launched in November 2007 with the intention of providing real work experience to graduates of Community Housing Partnership’s employment training programs. These graduates had already succeeded in moving from homelessness to stable housing. Furthermore, they had committed themselves to employment training and readiness, and were eager to obtain work. CHP Enterprises was designed to bridge the gap that many employment training graduates encountered between job training and economic self-sufficiency. In 2007, CHP Enterprises initiated its first business line, in Desk Clerk Staffing services, followed soon thereafter by a second business line in Unit Turnover / Maintenance services. In 2010, CHP Enterprises launched its third business line, in Bed Bug Remediation services, developed and operated in partnership with a licensed pest control company, to enhance the effectiveness of their work while meeting the needs of affordable housing managers to operate clean, well-run, respectful properties. The number of people served is to be determined. As a result of its work, CHP will contribute to the overall goal of 2,500 people moving into the workforce by 2015, with 70% retaining employment for at least one year.


Community Resource Center
Encinitas, California
Amount of Initial Award: $500,000 over two years

REDF will assist Community Resource Center (CRC) to start a new social enterprise: a thrift store to train, employ, and support domestic violence victims and other individuals with barriers to employment as they transition to financial independence. Through this social enterprise, CRC will pilot an innovative partnership with Manpower, a for-profit temporary staffing agency, to provide workforce training, job placement services, and other support. An estimate of the number of individuals to be served is to be determined. CRC will contribute to REDF’s overall goal of 2,500 people moving into the workforce by 2015, with 70% retaining employment for at least one year; and developing a sustainable model that can be widelymodel that can be widely replicated.


Goodwill Industries of Silicon Valley
San Jose, California
Amount of Initial Award: To be determined

Goodwill of Silicon Valley (GWSV) was established in Santa Clara County in 1926, to move individuals and families from poverty to prosperity. GWSV is part of Goodwill Industries International, a federation of over 200 autonomous Goodwill organizations worldwide. Goodwill’s primary activities to date have created a successful social enterprise model, creating opportunities for low-income individuals with a variety of compounding challenges to gain skills and receive the support services necessary to achieve self-sufficiency. REDF and GWSV will work together to further strengthen GWSV's existing social enterprises and support services for its social enterprise employees.


Taller San Jose
Santa Ana, California
Amount of Initial Award: $500,000 over two years

REDF will assist Taller San Jose to significantly grow employment opportunities for at-risk young adults in their innovative construction social enterprise, Hope Builders, Inc. A licensed general contractor, Hope Builders, Inc. employs graduates of Taller San Jose’s construction training program to build and rehabilitate affordable housing throughout Orange and Los Angeles counties. An estimate of the number of individuals and families to be served is to be determined. Taller San Jose will contribute to REDF’s overall goal of 2,500 people moving into the workforce by 2015, with 70% retaining employment for at least one year; and developing a sustainable model that can be widely replicated.


Urban Strategies
St. Louis, Missouri
Amount of Initial Award: $545,093 over two years

The entrepreneurial idea behind Green Streets was developed by McCormick, Baran, and Ragan (MBR), in response to the rising costs of trash removal in their San Francisco properties, coupled with the need to engage community youth at MBR sites in productive income generating activities. With the full support of Urban Strategies (US), Green Streets was established in April 2010 as a community owned and operated green business that manages recycling and composting and provides education on waste reduction. Green Streets founders are young entrepreneurs leading by example to start a business, invest in their communities and build careers; creating a better future for their city, their planet and themselves. The enterprise was piloted in three MBR San Francisco public and affordable housing sites – Plaza East, Hayes Valley and Bernal Dwellings. REDF will help Urban Strategies and MBR scale up the operations of Green Streets which will serve as an integral part of a multi-faceted job training and job placement program that Urban Strategies is developing under the HOPE SF umbrella. With a SIF subgrant from REDF, Urban Strategies will replicate Green Streets at three HOPE SF sites where US currently works, as well as ultimately to other MBR properties in California – specifically Los Angeles and Richmond. US will provide job placement and retention services, and MBR will continue to provide employment and capital to Green Streets. The number of people served is to be determined. Urban Strategies will contribute to the overall goal of 2,500 people moving into the workforce by 2015, with 70% retaining employment for at least one year.


Weingart Center Association
Los Angeles, California
Amount of Initial Award: $499,927 over two years

REDF will support Weingart to launch one or more Social Enterprise businesses. REDF will help Weingart develop the business model, anticipating potential replication of other enterprises in other locales that REDF has assisted in the past. The number of people served is to be determined. Weingart will help REDF meet its goal of 2,500 people moving into the workforce by 2015, with 70% retaining jobs for at least 1 year.

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